Practice makes perfect with list guidelines

Nearly 10 years after it started the process, the Canadian Marketing Association has finally released its guidelines for the sale, rental or transfer of customer lists and data. The guidelines, which set down on paper best practices for owners of customer...

Nearly 10 years after it started the process, the Canadian Marketing Association has finally released its guidelines for the sale, rental or transfer of customer lists and data.

The guidelines, which set down on paper best practices for owners of customer data, are predicated on the assumption that when marketers make their lists and customer data available to other companies, they accept responsibility for the use of that information. So they’d better make sure any offers being made to their customers are on the level. If the offer looks dodgy – if the advertising claims are outlandish, if the creative is in poor taste, or if the offer requires consumers to pay a service charge in order to claim a ‘prize’, for example – it probably is, say the guidelines, and marketers should exercise caution if they are to protect their customer relationships.

‘Our expectations are that these standards will help list owners and users build and maintain positive relationships with their clients, prospects and business partners,’ Bob Coles, CMA database and list council chairman and senior vice-president of Toronto list management firm Cornerstone, told delegates to the CMA’s annual database and list conference held earlier this month in Toronto.

The guidelines, articulated in a 14-page booklet titled ‘Guidelines for List and Data Transfer Practices’, also cover the technicalities of list and data transactions, setting out procedures for the proper identification of all parties, limitations on use of the data, method of payment, and how the data is to be used.

The main goal of the document is to maintain consumer confidence in the industry, says CMA president and CEO John Gustavson.

‘It is important that marketers have guidelines that help protect and preserve the value and integrity of their lists and data, while at the same time protecting the privacy of their customers,’ says Gustavson. When the CMA first discussed creating the guidelines 10 years ago, he notes, list rentals had no standards.

‘We had to bring some order to the chaos, if I can put it that way,’ he says. ‘Most list managers and brokers act very responsibly, but as our industry grows, more and more people are getting involved and expectations and obligations become somewhat different. We needed a set of best practices, and think now we’ve got a pretty good template.’

Database and list industry leaders within the CMA’s membership developed the guidelines, which adhere to the organization’s code of ethics, says Gustavson.

‘These guidelines will help marketers sort out contracts with list owners and review campaign history,’ says Clay Greene, manager of client knowledge analytics with the Royal Bank of Canada. ‘There is a lot of neat stuff in here.’

Sidebar: CMA list council chair steps down: Bob Coles hands reins to Cathy Preston

Bob Coles is retiring as the chairman of the Canadian Marketing Association’s database and list council.

The announcement came as Coles and CMA chairman John Gustavson released the long-awaited, years-in-the-making list and data transfer guidelines earlier this month in Toronto. Coles officially steps down in June.

‘He’s totally worn out,’ joked Gustavson in introducing Coles at the recent CMA list conference.

Replacing him is Cathy Preston, CMA board member and managing partner of Toronto-based marketing agency the Mosaic Group. Her appointment goes into effect on June 1.

Coles remains active, of course, as senior vice-president of Cornerstone’s list brokerage. DE

Corner Officer Shifts: Martin Fecko leaves Tangerine

Plus, PointsBet Canada and Thinkific name new marketing leaders as Lole gets a new ecommerce VP.
Corner Office

Martin Fecko departs Tangerine 

After roughly two years of serving as Tangerine’s chief marketing officer, Martin Fecko has a new gig. And this time, the financial services vet will apply his marketing leadership to a new sector, having been named CMO of Dentalcorp.

Fecko will lead the dental network’s end-to-end patient journey, support its overall growth, and work to maximize patient experiences across every touchpoint, the company said in a release.

“Martin’s in-depth expertise in engaging and retaining customers through a digitally enabled experience will be valuable in realizing our vision to be Canada’s most trusted healthcare network,” said Dentalcorp president Guy Amini.

Prior to joining Scotiabank’s digital-only banking brand in late-2019, Fecko was country manager for Intuit Canada and spent 10 years at American Express in consumer and digital marketing.

PointsBet Canada nabs former Bell marketer as it pursues expansion

Dave Rivers has joined PointsBet, an online gaming and sports betting operator, as Canadian VP of marketing.

Rivers joins from Bell, where he was most recently director of brand marketing and sponsorship, responsible for driving the company’s national sponsorship strategy and portfolio. He will report to PointsBet Canada chief commercial officer Nic Sulsky.

According to Sulsky, Rivers will “play a key role as we prepare to launch a business that is unique to our roots here in Canada.”

PointsBet has a significant presence in Australia, where it was founded, and in the U.S. In July, it named Scott Vanderwel, a former SVP at Rogers, as CEO of its Canadian subsidiary, one of several hires aimed at establishing the company’s presence locally.

Thinkific names first CMO among other executive appointments

Vancouver’s Thinkific, a platform for creating, marketing and selling online courses, has appointed Henk Campher as its first chief marketing officer as it invests in marketing to support its growth plans. It has also upped Chris McGuire to the role of chief technology officer and moved former CTO and co-founder Matt Payne into the new role of SVP of innovation.

Co-founder and CEO Greg Smith said Campher and McGuire “will play key roles building high-functioning teams around them and optimizing investment as we continue to carve out an increasingly prominent and differentiated position in the global market.”

Campher joins from Hootsuite, where he was VP of corporate marketing. Before that, he was VP of brand and communications at CRM giant Salesforce.

Lolë names new VP of digital omni-commerce as parent company exits bankruptcy protection

The Montreal-based athletic apparel and accessories retailer has appointed Rob French as VP of digital omni-commerce.

French will lead Lolë’s efforts in consumer insights, supply chain-to-consumer models and online customer journeys. In what is a new role for the company, he will also work to grow the company’s retail brand. He arrives with sixteen years experience in ecommerce, having spent the last few years as chief digital commerce officer at sporting goods retailer Decathlon.

In May 2020, Lolë parent Coalision Inc. filed for bankruptcy protection, citing several years of losses as a result of a downturn in the retail clothing market, increased competition and excess inventory – problems exacerbated by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the time of the filing, Coalision was seeking an investor or purchaser of its assets.

It successfully exited bankruptcy protection last year and is currently rebuilding its executive team, according to a spokesperson.